Scenic photo of the Flatirons in Boulder
Flatirons Vista South

Spring Is in the Air: Hikes Within Two Hours of Denver

March 31, 2022

This story was written by University Communications’ student content writer, Diddiery Santana

March 20 marked the beginning of the spring season. Enjoy a change of scenery from city views to meadows, hills, and mountain peaks by trying one (or all) of five hikes located within a two-hour or less drive from Denver. 

Boulder: Flatirons Vista 

Our sister campus is surrounded by several hikes of different difficulty levels. The Flatirons Vista is located just south of Boulder. The formation of the peaks gives a breathtaking view. The 3.3.-mile loop is fit for all hikers and bikers to explore.

Where: 3663 CO-93, Boulder

Golden: Red Rocks Park

We bet you’re no stranger to Red Rocks Park, also home to the iconic Red Rocks Amphitheatre. It is surrounded by great hiking, running, and biking trails. Take the 1.4-mile trail to catch a look of the beautiful red rocks formations. Make sure to check out the six-mile loop that has trails for all levels. 

Where: 18300 W Alameda Parkway, Morrison

St. Mary’s Glacier

The Saint Mary’s Glacier is a semi-permanent snowfield located in Arapaho National Forest. This scenic hike toward the glacier ascends through a stunning forest and ends with panoramic views. The quick 1.5-mile round trip hike is only located an hour from Denver. It’s a great way to experience all aspects of spring in one place. 

Waterton Canyon Trail 

Only a 35-minute drive from Denver, the Waterton Canyon is a 6.2-mile hike that differentiates from the typical mountain views with various picnic spots, wildlife, and access to reservoirs. It is one of the few trails that doesn’t allow dogs to protect the Bighorn Sheep population. 

Castlewood Canyon State Park 

Hidden away in the grasslands of Castle Rock approximately an hour from Denver is the Castlewood Canyon State Park. The Cherry Creek River can be spotted flowing through the west side of the park. A unique aspect of this park are the ruins of an old dam on the east side. This is also a hot spot for avid rock climbers.